From Trash to Treasure: Burlap Jewelry Cork Board

Burlap Jewelry Cork Board | Domesticated Academic

My last cork board that was free from office surplus as smaller: 18×24 and I’d been hanging all of my necklaces from a pants hanger–super classy? Yes! I saw a really cool one on Pinterest that used studded push pins but then I looked at the price of said push pins and decided that something that was going to hold my necklaces shouldn’t cost more than the necklaces…you know what I mean.

Burlap Jewelry Cork Board | Domesticated Academic

I am very pleased with this. I bought a yard of the burlap and was glad I did for a few reasons:

  • it was $1.99 a yard (hey big spender)
  • one layer was a little transparent, you could see the cork underneath it
  • it gave me some prime real estate to hang my earrings right in the second layer of burlap

Total cost: $7

Supplies:

  • cork board
  • measuring tape
  • fabric to fit
  • spray adhesive
  • staple gun or hot glue gun
  • hangers or fasteners
  • push pins
  • ribbon
  1. Clean up your cork boards if they’re used. Remove anything and wipe down with a damp cloth. Remove any other hangers or fasteners if they’ll get in the way of gluing fabric down.
  2. Lay fabric out to ‘practice’ where you want it to drape.
  3. Use spray adhesive and spray evenly across corked side of board and along frame. You can remove the frame but I left mine on because they you have to fasten the cork to the plywood on the back. The frame also makes a nice edge even with the fabric.
  4. Lay out your fabric and work from the inside out, centering and lining it up.
  5. Pat it down where you want it throughout.
  6. Let dry at least one hour (according to spray adhesive instructions-read the label, yours might be different).
  7. After the hour has passed, flip the board over.
  8. Trim the fabric to fit if there was a lot of excess.
  9. Use the staple gun or hot glue gun (both is probably overkill) and fasten the fabric to the back of the frame.
  10. Decorate with push pins, ribbon, etc…
  11. Affix fasteners or hangers last and hang that sucker up! It looks AMAZING!!
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From Trash to Treasure: Chevron Cork Boards

Chevron Cork Board | Domesticated Academic

My office turns offices around during the beginning of August. Faculty move in and out, new furniture gets delivered and unpacked, and there’s a natural cycle of renewal. It’s the last slow week or two before RA’s come back and then the 5,000 freshman move in a few days later. Everyone savors the last full week of a nearly empty campus and the community.

Chevron Cork Board | Domesticated Academic

Skunking around the office in the summer has its’ advantages and one of them is getting your hands on some stuff that no one else wants! I’m not one to waste an opportunity so upon doing a walk through, I asked the office admin if she knew of anyone getting rid of:

  • a desk
  • office chairs
  • cork boards
  • small storage drawer (of sorts)

And she delivered….she’s good like that and it helps that I like her and she likes me. You gotta get in good w/ the office admins. They’ll make or break your survival!

She showed up w/ her master keys and said, “let’s go for a walk.”

She took me to several offices that were being surplused and vacated or surplused because the faculty had retired, moved, or ordered new furniture. She then said those magic words:

“anything in these offices is up for grabs.”

Angels sang, children wept, and I got tagging! Put a post-it with your name & date and it’s ‘yours.’

I scored a handsome newer desk–I wasn’t using my old desk because it was too low to work at and extremely uncomfortable. This one is merely a table because I didn’t need anymore storage, I wasn’t using the drawers on the old one.

I scored three new office chairs. They all match, they all work, and they have minimal stains.

I scored THREE corkboards. Two large and one small. I turned my crafty gene on and headed to the fabric store w/ my 40% off coupons in tow. The two I did for my office turned out great! I already owned the glue gun, measuring tape, and staple gun, so total cost of these two beauties:

$20

Supplies:

  • cork boards
  • measuring tape
  • fabric to fit
  • spray adhesive
  • staple gun or hot glue gun
  • hangers or fasteners
  1. Clean up your cork boards if they’re used. Remove anything and wipe down with a damp cloth. Remove any other hangers or fasteners if they’ll get in the way of gluing fabric down.
  2. Lay fabric out to ‘practice’ where you want it to drape.
  3. Use spray adhesive and spray evenly across corked side of board and along frame. You can remove the frame but I left mine on because they you have to fasten the cork to the plywood on the back. The frame also makes a nice edge even with the fabric.
  4. Lay out your fabric and work from the inside out, centering and lining it up.
  5. Pat it down where you want it throughout.
  6. Let dry at least one hour (according to spray adhesive instructions-read the label, yours might be different).
  7. After the hour has passed, flip the board over.
  8. Trim the fabric to fit if there was a lot of excess.
  9. Use the staple gun or hot glue gun (both is probably overkill) and fasten the fabric to the back of the frame.
  10. Decorate with push pins, ribbon, etc…
  11. Affix fasteners or hangers last and hang that sucker up! It looks AMAZING!!

DIY Photo Light Box

DIY Photo Light Box | Domesticated Academic

I have wanted to build one of these for several months, ok….for almost a year. I kept seeing all of these tutorials on Pinterest and I kept pinning them, but never got to the ‘follow through’ part of the project due to reasons that I cannot even defend. There was always something to bake, sew, go and see, or simply relax, thus, the light box project was pushed to the wayside.

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it…..

DIY Photo Light Box | Domesticated Academic

The box I used showed up several months ago and I saved it like a good packrat, thinking, “i’ll use this at some point…” that was during the holidays. Here we are in March! Better late than never right?

DIY Photo Light Box | Domesticated Academic

Instructions for this sucker are easy, you’ll see that I really had no excuse. I followed the tutorial off of flax & twine and she made it easy as pie!

DIY Photo Light Box Tutorial:

You’ll need:

  • Cardboard box
  • Tissue paper
  • Craft knife or utility knife
  • Packing tape
  • White posterboard (should be at least 30% longer than the box length)
  1. Cut off the tops of the box.
  2. Cut out a rectangle 1″ shy of sides on three of the four sides of the box.
  3. Pop out the side
  4. Piece together tissue paper with packing tape to a size large enough to cover one side of the box. Cut the tissue paper to size as best you can.
  5.  Attach tissue paper to each open side of the box with packing tape.
  6. Cut white poster board the width of the box.
  7.  Place the poster board in the box such that it curves inside the box. 
  8. Place object inside box at flat part of cardboard.  Place box in as much light as possible. Take photos.

Valentine’s Day Garland

Valentine's Day Garland | Domesticated Academic

I saw this on Etsy and of course, had that recurring thought, “I can do this, I can do this!” Alas, here we are. Turns out, this was a super easy, super fun, super inexpensive craft that now adorns my side board with my Valentine’s Day themed wreath. You’ll also see that I leave up a string of Christmas lights year round.

Valentine's Day Garland | Domesticated Academic

I purchased the ribbon from the dollar bin at the Target and a deck of cards from the Dollar General. I had the hole punch kicking around in my ‘craft box’ that lives under the side board and contains a hodge podge of stuff necessary for crafting, sewing, painting, and my cake decorating tip kit. Yes, I know, it’s a mess. Someday when I own a house again, I aspire to having things more organized. Alas, I’m lucky enough to have a nice townhouse at the moment with not enough storage so my life problems are pretty small. I’m ok with my ‘catch all’ box, it’s like a giant junk drawer….

Valentine's Day Garland | Domesticated Academic

You’ll love this because it’s low cost, super easy, and dresses up any space like a mantle, wall, or in my case: my side board, quickly and inexpensively.  Ribbon is strung through a suit of “heart” playing cards and knotted with fantastic heart-inspired fabric. This unique garland will add a lil’ bit of country and a whole lot of chiq to your Valentine’s Day, wedding, engagement photo, mantle, headboard, or window

You’ll need:

15 min.

This cost less than $5 to make. The Etsy shop has it for about $17

  • a deck of cards (red cards separated
  • 1-2 yards of ribbon of choice
  • hole punch
  1. Using the hole punch, punch two holes in each card next to each other. I punched them about an inch apart so you can see the ribbon.
  2. Take ribbon and string the cards through it, making sure there is some space between them if you want to tie ribbon in between.
  3. Tie extra pieces of ribbon in simple knots between cards for added decoration.
  4. Knot each end of the garland so cards don’t slip off.
  5. Display with pride.

Springtime green “grass” wreath

I love Spring.  It has sprung! I saw an awesome wreath on pinterest and wanted to make it.  Then: I found out the price of fun fur…..Ewwww….I’m too cheap.  Even with a sale the cost of two rolls of fun fur was steep for me. Yikes.  I’m cheap, I know it.

As I wandered around the craft store, something else caught my eye: green ‘grass’ for Easter baskets.  It wasn’t the really, really cheap kind–you know, the plastic grass, but more like raffeta.  The light bulb went off in my head and for $1.99 per bag, it was a done deal.

You could decorate this for Easter but I wanted a straight up spring wreath…..I opted to buy these little flowers because they were so darn cute, but you could make them just as easy.

I dug around the $1 bin for a sweet role of ribbon and made a bow.  This is super fun!

You’ll need:

  • styrofoam circle
  • Easter grass
  • craft glue
  • a sponge or some type of glue spreading device 🙂
  • flowers or other decorations
  1. Put some newspapers down in case of a spill.
  2. Spread craft glue in increments.  I used a sponge brush to spread it that I had in the craft box.
  3. Push handfuls of the Easter grass down firmly and move around as you need to make it fill in.
  4. Let it dry…..walk away.
  5. Glue flowers or other decorations to the wreath.
  6. Finish with a fun bow or ribbon for SPRING!!!

Easter wreath

I saw this online and fell in l-o-v-e with it….and then I thought: “I can do this. No problem-o.” I’ll make a super cute spring wreath that’s not totally Easter but highlights spring time!  Fresh colors, felt flowers, awesome!

Then, I was shopping and saw this:

and proceeded to think, “that’s super cute too! how can i merge them to make something equally awesome?”

I took my bad self to the craft store and spent about 30 minutes picking out a soft yellow yarn, complimentary felt colors, and so on….took me two more weeks to find eggs that I liked.  There was a lot of choices at Target:

And then I got home and started wrapping this beast.  #patience.

 I ended up doing three layers of yarn for what I felt as though was ‘good coverage’ and was happy after layer three.  You can do this, it’s a great activity for kids too.  I made the flowers out of felt, which I already blogged about and overall, this was a nice project for me.  While I like immediate results, I also realize that this makes me blow through projects rather quickly.

You’ll need:

  • 1 wreath made of styrofoam
  • 1 big ball of yarn, mine was equivalent to two skeins (one skein is probably more than enough too, lots leftover)
  • hot glue gun
  • felt flowers or other decorations
  • some patience to wrap the yarn, the rest goes pretty smoothly w/ your friend, “HOT GLUE GUN”
Wrap that sucker until you’re happy.  I proceeded to wrap some ribbon to add some more texture.  Finally: felt flowers and plastic eggs. Life is good. Voila! Enjoy your spring wreath!

Easter garland

I was roaming through Target the other day, browsing in the home goods section and a nice display of Easter decorations and I came across this:

“$4 plus tax????  mmm, NO way sir!  I can make this for less than that and make it BETTTERRRRRRR” :D. <—that’s the dialogue that went through my head……

So, I went back to the craft store and bought some felt, a roll of ribbon from the dollar bin, and printed off an ‘egg shaped’ pattern from the Internet.

You’ll need:

  • Patience (just a little)
  • 6 pieces of felt
  • egg shape or a good hand
  • sharp scissors
  • craft glue
  • 1 roll ribbon (mine was 3 yards)

 

Cut out egg shapes.  I made four from each sheet and cut up the rest in patterns and strips for the decorations on the eggs.  Glue the embellishments as you see fit.  This is the fun part!  Kids can make some great garland!

When  your eggs are done and dry, lay them out as you like on the ribbon and glue into place.  I chose a tight garland, but have fun!